The Register-Herald, Beckley, West Virginia

Editorials

March 8, 2013

That day is here

State can no longer place its bet on lottery, gambling revenues

We knew the day would come.

The lottery and gaming industry in West Virginia has produced big money for more than two decades. Billions have been funneled into the treasury from gambling; education, senior citizen programs and the tourism industry have benefited tremendously from those dollars.

But West Virginia no longer can consider gambling as a stable source of funding.

Many factors are now in play that will have a negative impact on this revenue stream including major competition, specifically in the form of casinos, from surrounding states.

The West Virginia Racing Association highlighted its plight to lawmakers earlier this week and is seeking relief from the state when it comes to licensing fees and taxes.

Closing down table game operations, furloughing employees and reducing racing cards and purses are all being talked about.

In addition to the competition from neighboring jurisdictions, which has taken away lots of out-of-state visitors and their money, the economy has also slowed and people just don’t have the same amount of disposable income to “play with” if you will.

A few years back, when the issue of video lottery machines and licenses was being heavily debated, opponents of gambling were sounding the red alert on numerous fronts including how the pot at the end of the rainbow would eventually dry up.

While many supporters of gambling expected it wouldn’t come this soon, that day is here.

Sure, millions are still going to be generated from the lottery and gambling, but the golden age certainly is over and legislators need to be thinking now how they are going to deal with the fiscal fallout that has begun and will continue.

 

1
Text Only
Editorials
  • Missing from the show

    If they attended, lawmakers would see strides made by TWV

    July 31, 2014

  • VA breakthrough

    Compromise shows Congress can put partisanship aside for the proper cause

    July 30, 2014

  • Doughnut holes

    Annexation benefits outweigh the taxes

    July 29, 2014

  • The play’s the thing

    TWV twins reveal local riches that can’t be found anywhere else

    July 27, 2014

  • Primary care

    DHHR program weans folks away from the ER

    July 24, 2014

  • Rain? What Rain?

    Community still enjoys auto fair despite uncooperative weather

    July 23, 2014

  • Do tell

    It’s hard to keep a secret in today’s here-a-camera, there-a-camera, everywhere-a-camera world. Whatever one does that is embarrassing is immediately posted on YouTube, Facebook or other social media of choice.

    July 22, 2014

  • Juvenile justice

    West Virginia nearly doubled the rate it sent youths to juvenile facilities from 1997 to 2011, in contrast to declining rates of youthful incarceration elsewhere in the United States.

    July 20, 2014

  • Thumbs — Saturday, July 19, 2014

    July 19, 2014

  • Do something

     Johnstown police have charged three men in the brutal murder early Sunday of a city academy student.

    July 18, 2014